Nokia prepares for US C-Band 5G auction

Nokia demonstrated gigabit speeds in a trial of 5G technology on C-band spectrum (3.7GHz to 4.2GHz), highlighting the results as the US prepares to auction licences in the band in December.

The vendor said tests conducted in Texas using its AirScale radio platform and a 100MHz channel configured in a non-standalone set-up delivered data rates of more than 1GB/s. It noted it achieved successful handoffs between base stations during drive testing, maintaining a stable 5G connection and performance.

Tommi Uitto, Nokia’s president of Mobile Networks, stated the test is “significant because it proves that we have a solution ready to go”, following the auction.

The sale of 280MHz of key mid-band spectrum is due to begin on 8 December. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is yet to approve final procedures, but proposed auctioning a total of 5,684 licences in 20MHz blocks.

Nokia wasn’t shy about using the auction as an opportunity to pitch for a larger slice of 5G business from top US operators, with Uitto noting it looked forward to “strengthening our relationship with them further by deploying C-band”.

Earlier this month, the FCC denied a petition from a group of satellite service providers seeking to delay the sale while a legal challenge winds its way through the court system.